Bay Area bread favorites

Right now, my favorites are:

Semifreddi’s Odessa Rye that we get at their Kensington shop. I like it with any cured meat and mustard, or smoked salmon and creme fraiche, or toasted with butter and apricot jam. It has the texture I associate with a good rye – a moist by dense crumb and a durable sturdy crust with a lot of flavor. (Acme’s rye’s texture seems wrong. Tasty but wrong.) Odd because I don’t like Semifreddi’s Deli rye at all.

Acme’s Pain de Mie from San Pablo bakery for cheesy toasted sandwiches, BLTs. Acme sourdough baguette with soppresetta, provolone and tomato.

Cheeseboard’s English muffins for any egg/cheese/meat combo.

Wow, I can’t talk about bread without doing a sandwich TMI.

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Aaaand, Epicurean Trader now no longer sells Midwife + Baker bread. Too expensive and didn’t sell well, so they were losing lots of money on it. Looks like I’ll have to get it another way.

No problem with the sandwich descriptions, LOL. I loved them!

Besides, a good bread IS for sandwiches…well, when it’s not for pairing with wine and cheese :yum:


Vital Vittles. Good sliced bread with stone ground wheat and no preservatives. Not fashionable, but gets the job done.

Got the whole wheat from Pain Bakery yesterday. wanted to try the country but they were out. very big piece (~45-50 oz) for $9.9 Good quality.

What was the bottom of the crust like? The time I had it before, I liked the crumb and the top, but the bottom crust was way too hard.

Pain bakes out of the old Anna’s Danish Butter Cookies in San Mateo, KitchenTown, and is available at a few other places

It wasn’t hard for me. it was a little chewy, which might be because I got it at 6pm. I bet it was lovely at 8am.

Thanks, I’ll try it again!

I bought a loaf of their country style whole wheat bread (enormous loaf) at Noriega Produce. It was one of the best breads that I’ve ever tasted – crispy/chewy dark crust, beautiful moist (but not gummy) golden crumb. It remained fresh tasting for 4 days (John and I had to keep ourselves from devouring it.) It toasts beautifully. And, by the way, it’s also available at Gus’s Community Market (2111 Harrison St. at 17th St.)


Mercury News’ sourdough comparison. They gave the nod to Arizmendi and Acme.

I am 100% in love with b. patisserie’s Levain.

Arizmendi is my sourdough love!

We don’t eat a lot of bread so it’s hard for me to justify going out of the way for it. Currently we like:

La Farine’s sweet baguette for our cheese & charcuterie. We are not fond of the super-hard crust style, nor of sourdough.

Mama Papa Lithuania restaurant to buy their AmbeRye. This is a light rye, with wheat and made with yeast, so sweeter than the traditional sourdough starter rye breads. I still prefer Semifreddi’s, but it’s too inconvenient for us to go to Kensington just for a loaf of bread, sigh.

Model Bakery for their English muffins. They are AMAZING for savory cheese toasts, although too salty for jam.

One of our fav restaurants is Bouchee/Carmel. When I asked them where they got their bread, they said they get it from Village Bakery, Carmel Valley. Wonderful French bread!

Whole Foods carries it and I’ve been using it for my signature turkey sandwiches this past week. It’s just okay in my opinion. I find it a bit too spongy. I think I’m going to start walking over to Cheese Plus to buy bread as they seem to have great soft baguettes and I like their Dutch Crunch and sourdough.

Pain Bakery is now selling out of a storefront in Temescal, Oakland

I have been digging the bread from the midwife and the baker.
Their baguette is my current favorite baguette, and their almond croissant rivals the ones from Voyageur du temps in Los Altos. I also buy their flatbread frequently for breakfast - I add a runny egg on top. Another favorite is their seeded loaf for sandwiches and to feed to the kids. And of course the chocolate sourdough which I eat with cream cheese.

I don’t go to the Mountain View farmer’s market so I had been wondering about Acme’s presence there after they moved away from the Independence Avenue baking facility.

It sounds like the storefront from their production facility is yet to open full time. But its a huge news to me because almost every Saturday morning I have a commitment that is literally one block away from their facilities. Easy access to good bread!!!

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In that case I should mention that I am a sweet baguette person, not sour. Acme’s rustic baguette was my favorite until recently.

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I called Midwife and the Baker, then showed up at the bakery on a Saturday morning. Chatted with Mac for a while he’s preparing and loading loaves into the oven. I got the whole wheat and sesame. and he threw in a chocolate bread for free. There is no retail store yet, but they seem happy to sell loaves to anyone who find their way to the bakery. They stick around until around 1pm, according to Mac. Ring the rightmost door.

Very good bread. Whole wheat and sesame are two pounds each.

Thanks, @felice and Jon Kauffman’s article about the former Acme location.

Partially eaten loaves:



They used to have the decorative fougasse at the Ferry Building. Anyway the herb slab IS a fougasse. Too oily for my tastes. But I do love Acme’s walnut levain.